Kingdom???

kingdom

 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need (Matthew 6:33 NLT)

I regard myself as a Kingdom preacher. Inspired by the prayer of Jesus I pray for and long for the Kingdom of God here on earth, as it is in heaven, and not deferred to one day somewhere.

I am pleased to think that many who have sat under my preaching, both in church and on Television, have benefited from my teaching and regard themselves as Kingdom orientated believers. Both the scripture quoted here and the Lord’s prayer, along with a number of other passages teach us that the Kingdom of God on earth is something we can know and experience. Therefor it should be the passionate plea and desire of us all, that it would fully manifest.

If it is true for us then we live as Kingdom people.Kingdom desiring, Kingdom seeking, Kingdom proclaiming.This will also parade before the world the benefits that those who are in Christ have as citizens of the Kingdom.

So in the Kingdom of God we too are kings, ruling and reigning with Him.At the same time we are a royal priesthood and that royalty makes us stand out.So too  we are the sons of the King and so enjoy the special place a son has. So too we wear His seal and speak with His authority.

And so looking like, walking like, talking like what we think we should becomes all important. My clothes, my car, my jewelry, my attitude, my ………. . So that we can say “look at me! I am a Kingdom person”. Praying and seeking the Kingdom becomes secondary to proclaiming it and degenerates into “Kingdom Now” or this is the Kingdom.

True Kingdom is far removed from this self seeking life. Seeking the Kingdom is unrelated to seeking the lifestyle we desire. Kingdom is rather all about the King.Seeking this Kingdom is all about seeing Him enthroned in His rightful place.Desiring the Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven desires seeing Jesus Christ as Lord.

Seeking the Kingdom is not proclaiming the look at me stuff but proclaiming His Lordship. It is not pretending and calling in prosperity but by bowing our knee and urging all men to confess Him as Lord.

The Kingdom manifests we submit to His Lordship. Being and living and wearing the crown of righteousness. When I am who and what Jesus says I am, doing and being what He says I should do and be. When I show the world that He is certainly the Lord of Lords and King of Kings. When my life fades into the shadow of Him and yet brings His light into the world. When all the world can see His Lordship in me, the Kingdom has manifested, here and now.

“come Lord Jesus” and “come prosperity” are not the same thing. Having the world honor you is not the same as teaching them to honor Jesus. Bragging about what you can do is not the same as testifying of Him.Living like the spoiled son of an oil sheik more often brings shame than honor to the King.

Bow down before Him, proclaim Him as King. Let His Lordship be your song and dance.

Then all that goes together with being in His Kingdom won’t be so demanding on your mind as you will already have it.

It’s knowing who He is that makes you who you are.

 

 

 

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EFFECTIVE SOWING

sowing

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back (Luke 6:38 NLT)

Sowing, the the act of putting seed in place with the expectancy of reaping a harvest from it. An agricultural parallel the Bible uses when talking of the giving of finances, showing of grace, judgement etc. In fact it is used in both a positive and negative sense talking about our interactions with others.

Not to be confused with law or works the summary of this principle is whatever you give will be multiplied back to you. It works. It is a principle stated in many ways outside of the Bible as well and proved by the prosperity of the generous, whether Christians or not.

It is clear that the outcome expected is directly controlled by the input. Your sowing determines your harvest. It is vital then to pay attention to effective outcome influenced sowing.

What you sow. The nature of the seed. Love, joy, peace, hate, judgement and of course money. Many would advocate naming the desired harvest and hope that any seed would produce it. Others get very specific about the detail, sowing a chair to harvest a lounge suite sort of thing. We can be sure though that the nature of the seed will determine the nature of the harvest.

Where you sow.  Jesus gives us a good example of what happens when we proclaim His Word, showing how the seed falls in different places that each effect the harvest in some way. This will always be true for much of the seed we sow. When it comes to scarce resources such as our time and money we need to be a lot more diligent about where we sow. Taking the same example we need to be sure that in order to receive the maximum return, all our seed should fall on fertile ground.

This is where things go wrong too often. We look around searching for such ground and see the harvest fields others are enjoying. Unscrupulous men will call us to sow into their ground. Claiming their field to be  the most fertile. many promote themselves and their ministries as being successful and call others to sow into their success in order to harvest their own. So much of the valuable and much needed seed is sown into a field already being harvested.

The problem of sowing into a ripe field is that your seed just gets swallowed up in the harvest. The owner of the field is harvesting and at the same time gathering your seed, counting it as his harvest. What seed that does make it into the ground might grow, but you will only see the fruit in his barn. Sure you will be blessed as you sow. Sure you will think of being a partner in the harvest. But????

Who says the soil is still fertile anyway. It may be drained of goodness and about to become fallow.

Fertile ground is where ministry is producing Kingdom fruit. Where God is using people to bring in His harvest. Where the leader of the workers is not seeking His own harvest but concentrating on the Kingdom. Sow into that field where the ground is being worked and cared for and you will see your seed produce fruit and you will share in the harvest.

How you sow.Galatians 6 sums this up wonderfully:

7 Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. 8 Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. 9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up (NIV)

Your purpose, your heart, your reason for sowing really determines the nature of the seed, allows the Spirit to show you the fertile ground and when it causes blessing it will bring back that blessing multiplied.

HARVEST

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The harvesters are paid good wages, and the fruit they harvest is people brought to eternal life. What joy awaits both the planter and the harvester alike! (John 4:36 NLT)

Aah yes! Harvest. That thing that so many of us are working towards, pressing into, declaring.

Harvest. Finally the fruit we have been waiting for. Joy and blessing in abundance. Celebrations unequaled.

The whole concept of harvest is a major New Testament theme, central to the Kingdom, yet so often misunderstood. Preachers of the Kingdom life often use the term freely in their quest to encourage their hearers to be Kingdom minded, to grasp the things of the Kingdom, to experience the Kingdom here and now. Sadly the end result is far from what is taught by Jesus. The principles of sowing and reaping in our personal lives emphasized to the point where true Kingdom harvest is forgotten.

And so too many miss out on this abundance that God has on offer.

Kingdom harvest is about one thing only – bringing people to eternal life.

The principles of sowing and reaping do stand. However this is not a crop we have planted. It is not a harvest grown from our seed that we sow. This is a crop that has sprung up out of the incorruptible seed that died and was buried. This is God’s own seed that He gave and from which has come forth life.

The harvest therefor belongs to the Lord. Jesus calls Him the Lord of the Harvest.

It is not a harvest we work for, says Jesus, but a harvest in which we share by grace. It is however a harvest that we are called to work in. We are taught to ask the Lord to send us out to be a part of bringing it in, to work as harvesters who have had no previous activity in bringing the crop to a point of readiness. The harvest is there for the reaping just waiting for us to step in.

It is not a harvest that meets our needs but a harvest that glorifies its Lord. The angels celebrate, all heaven rejoices and the trees of the fields clap their hands with each swing of the sickle. The Kingdom celebrating each person brought in.

And we the workers go out in joy. The joy of the Lord being our strength and our portion. His joy at each salvation shared with us. The pure pleasure of  seeing the lost found, the prodigal returning, the dead rising and the blind seeing. The eternal gratification of having been used by God for the fulfillment of His purposes. The privilege of taking people by the hand and bringing them into the presence of God. Salvation belongs to the Lord but He lets you do it.

The reaper sharing the joy of the sower as if it was our own harvest to rejoice in. Our wages paid without fail. Blessing upon blessing.

Let us look around. Look at the world and begin to see true Kingdom possibility. People all around us just dying to be saved. The Seed planted and the age prepared for every knee to bow and tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. See in this depraved world a harvest white with readiness.

And pray the Lord of the harvest will send in workers to bring it in. Make yourself available for Him to use. Jump up and down in front of Him shouting your willingness out to Him. Your prayer not that others will do it, but that He will use you.

Shout out the availability of your finances. Give that the work can be funded. Give it unto the Lord. Let Him use it. Give to those that go. Feed the preachers. Put shoes on those that walk to the far end of the fields. Take care of the families that camp out in the fields. Make sure those who go have no cares or burdens.

Shout out the testimony you have. Be as the sun to the sunflower making the heads of the lost turn towards you that they might see Jesus and be plucked into His grace.

Shout out your time. Use every moment ensuring that none are lost due to your slothfulness. Catching each ripe soul before it rots.

Shout out your authority. Intercede. Pray for protection and strength to ward off the thief who tries to steal the harvest.

Walk out into the harvest. Parade yourself in the fields as sons of the owner. Picking each one as if it was your own. Urging others on to work while there is time.

True harvest. Kingdom harvest. Lasting harvest. Swing the sickle for the Harvest is ripe.

OH WHAT JOY WE SHARE!!!!

 

 

 

 

WHEN GOD IS YOUR SOURCE…..

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 I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13 NLT)

As children of God it should be our constant habit to run to our Father whenever we need anything. After all He can do all things and has promised us these things and has proved beyond a doubt how faithful he is in keeping His promises.

So we trust and rely on Him for all we need and desire. Our daily bread. Our jobs, our homes, our families, our successes, our health. Giving Him thanks and praise for the normal things of life (at least I hope you do)

Like David we tell the world that the Lord is the source of all our joy (Ps 43:4).

But there are times in our lives when we need more than the normal. When the cupboard of God’s provision seems to have become empty. When our health is suddenly not good. We have no prospect of a job. A relationship seems forever destroyed. When we find ourselves in a place that no “normal” can give us escape from. A place where  ungodly men would dig deeper and deeper into their own strength and turn on themselves in despair when even that runs out.

Make a plan! Do something! Turn in any and every direction seeking help!

Yet nothing works. The deeper you dig the deeper the hole. Hunger weakens you. Illness seems to rule rampantly. Whatever the situation it is bigger than any answer you can see.

You pray and you pray and then you pray some more. Others are praying with you and for you. Still you cannot think of any way that this can be resolved.

There is nothing.

When God is your source that is not a scary thought.

We serve a miracle working God. We serve the creator of the heavens and the earth. We serve the God who created all things out of nothing. It is our Lord through whom and by whom all things exist, Jesus, the source of all life who has made it possible to come to the Father in the first place.

He doesn’t need anything to be able to do what we need. We need a miracle – he does them.

The human mind seeks answers. It calculates and searches back and forth. Depression, denying God often the outcome.

When God is your source the mind renewed by the Holy Spirit is filled with joy and peace. The hopeless void replace by hope above and beyond all hope. His Spirit quietens the voices in your head, removes the questions and holds your vision fixed on Him

When God is your source we need to embrace that void that is created where there is no hope. Realizing and celebrating the fact that it is where we are devoid of plans, where we are not trying to manipulate or bring influence that God will do His greatest work

.Its not easy as it sounds, especially the more desperate your situation but be assured that just by His Word your need will be met. Just by His Word your answer, your breakthrough, your miracle already exists.

Look into the void and see what you are calling as if it were. Look into the nothing and be blessed in the knowledge that it is there that God will do it for you.

When God is you source……….

nothing matters.

 

 

Psalm 29 – Dressed to impress

In awe before the glory, in awe before God’s visible power. Stand at attention! Dress your best to honor him!

Suit-sleeve-tags

Three piece suit, gold cuff links, big gold watch, gold rings on a number of fingers and the makers label on the outside of the jacket sleeve.

What is it all about? Is it smart? Certainly! Does it look good? Certainly! But why the label on the suit sleeve? What does that do?

Dressed to impress! Sunday best! Look at me I am successful. Look at me I am somebody special. Look at me I have a brand name suit.

No disrespect. Many people like to look good when they go to church and that is great. It is after all the gathering of the sons of the King. The question is, however, is it because they are in awe of the glory or trying to impress. Is it a reflection of their being or a cover up?

Does the man in front display God’s visible power by showing a suit label? Is he making people stand to attention before God or is he drawing attention to himself? Is it a portrait of look what the Lord has done or an invitation to admire him?

The appearance of man is never a direct link to the appearance of God. It is the same with huge crosses around our necks and loud tattoos. All meaningless if the life behind and beneath the adornment doesn’t  reveal Him.

Dress well, dress as you please. Make visible statements to the world but be sure who is getting noticed, who is getting praised. What do the people say? Great clothes or powerful anointing?  Are they admiring you or praising God? Are they talking about you or testifying about God?

Before you get dressed, before you get that tattoo, before you hang that cross around your neck ask yourself what purpose it will serve. Does it need to be shining gold? Would a wooden cross tied with wire bring you as much attention?

Dress your best to honour God. Clothe yourself in Christ. Put on the robe of righteousness. The garments of pure white, washed in the blood of Jesus. Wear the mantle you have been given. That will certainly impress. It will make people be in awe of the glory, it will make them see the visible power of God. It will make them stand to attention. It will honour God.

Add to that the tattoo. Add to that the cross. Add to that the suit and cuff links. The only label you will want to display is His seal placed on you.

My own Psalm – Waiting on God

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It sucks. The whole world, common sense, the mind, survival instincts all screaming at you to do something. Your call screaming in your ear to be active, your gifts building up so much pressure inside you, long overdue to explode out into the world. The preacher that you are finding a sermon in every verse that you read, every occasion needing a word but no opportunity to bring it. Your finances so depleted you are considering cooking your red bank statement so at least you will have something to eat.

But your faith says wait on God.

The world looks at you and shakes its head, where is your God now? Thought your God would never let you down? Thought you said He would never let you become ridiculed and laughed at but now you cant pay your accounts? Get a job! God helps those who help themselves.

But Christ in you says wait on God.

You pray without ceasing. Your read scripture after scripture and one day are frustrated as it seems God is keeping quiet but the next day you hear many promises. One day you are abandoned but the next brings words that show a future. Yet another day, another week has passed and your situation has only got worse.

But the Word demands you wait on God.

You reach out. Look for counsel, for guidance, for encouragement. You long for an unsolicited prophecy. Anything that would indicate that God does indeed have a plan for you. Nothing. be strong they say. Just trust God, he will. Time is running out, frustration is taking hold, men of God are letting you down. Their ministry is useless to you. A lie?

But you want only what God has for you. Wait on God.

It sucks. When Gail and I were attacked in Mozambique our loss and suffering goes so far beyond the physical. Our bodies have, are and will be fully healed. The material loss will be replaced or not. What has been the biggest issue is the unnatural way we were violently removed from our ministry. We are our ministry. I am a preacher, an evangelist teacher.I live to bring Christ to the lost. Gail is one with me in life and ministry.But for the moment it is all gone. Stolen. Wrestled from us. Torn out of us. My ministry has been taken from me. The pain so deep that I have not written a devotion for a month. Not recorded a single message for broadcast.

But this I know. They could not steal my anointing. They could not beat my calling out of me. They could not kill Christ who lives from me or so damage me as to cause Him to move out. My God still lives and lives on the throne. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He remains the same yesterday today and tomorrow. His words are as true today as they always have been.He is all conquering all victorious. My enemies may be barking and roaring and licking their lips but their defeat remains sealed.

I say I will wait on God. He is my strength. He is carrying me through this dark valley. What He has purposed for me will manifest. I will soar like an eagle, I will walk forever with Him, I will run with the Word proclaiming Him in even greater ways than before.

Right now it sucks but waiting on the Lord is my only hope.